Football: United set to move for Moyes

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ALEX FERGUSON, the Manchester United manager, will ask Preston North End for permission to talk to David Moyes about becoming his assistant.

Ferguson has decided that the young Glaswegian, rated one of the game's brightest prospects, is the ideal replacement for Brian Kidd. The Old Trafford manager has worked alone since Kidd left for Blackburn and thinks the time is right to recruit a new assistant. He feels the workload is too much for him alone and wants a vibrant young coach who can take training.

Moyes has earned widespread admiration as a result of Preston's challenge for promotion and their FA Cup encounter with Arsenal last week. He celebrates his first anniversary as manager today.

The quietly determined Moyes has been embarrassed by questions about the United link, first revealed by the Independent in December, but would obviously be interested in the post. North End are bound to fight to keep him, however, and could demand a large compensation figure.

Ferguson has admired Moyes for years. He has been a qualified coach from his early 20s and has captained all the clubs he played for.